Family Crimes

'He Was Her First Love': Couple Claims Idaho Nurse Was Taken Advantage Of By Kelsey Berreth's Fiancé

Joe and Patty Rockstahl claim the nurse questioned in Kelsey Berreth's disappearance and presumed death was in love with Patrick Frazee dating back to high school.

An Idaho couple who say they have a connection to the nurse questioned in relation to the Kelsey Berreth case claim that the woman had a romantic relationship with Berreth’s fiancé and that he took advantage of that.

Investigators questioned the 32-year-old nurse in early January after it was revealed that she may have disposed of Berreth’s cell phone, according to ABC News. Her name has not been officially released and she has not been officially charged with any crime.

Idaho couple Joe and Patty Rockstahl told CBS News that the nurse was in love with Berreth’s fiancé, Patrick Frazee, who was arrested and charged with first-degree murder and solicitation of first-degree murder in connection with her disappearance in December.

"She was in love with him from a very young age," Patty Rockstahl said, adding that the two met a little after she finished high school. "She was very vulnerable and I think she cared for him, and he took advantage of that. … He was her first love, I understand, and … he had a hold on her."

The Rockstahls say that an employee of theirs was close friends with the nurse, and that their worker confided in them. They have never met woman in person.

The couple told CBS News that their employee claimed that Frazee threatened the nurse by stating, "that little girls go missing off the playground all the time."

The nurse is reportedly a mother.

"[She] was so scared, he was so angry that he said things that made [her] think he had killed before. So of course, she's going to be terrified," Joe Rockstahl said.

Berreth, who had a 1-year-old daughter with Frazee, is presumed dead, though her body has yet to be found. Although she was last seen in a Colorado grocery store on Thanksgiving, Berreth's phone pinged from near Gooding, Idaho three days later, according to East Idaho News. Several texts were sent from the phone after she vanished and Patty Rockstahl said she believes it was the nurse who sent those texts.

"She had the phone," she told CBS News. "She was probably instructed to send those texts by Patrick but that's – there's nobody else that could've sent those texts to my knowledge."

Police confirmed that Berreth’s phone was found in Idaho.

A charging document claimed Frazee was working to find someone to kill Berreth between September and November, according to the Associated Press. The Rockstahls said they were told that Frazee asked the nurse to help him kill Berreth in October.  They do not think that she assisted in the alleged murder.

"I think she was afraid and I think she got in over her head," Patty Rockstahl said. "She was in love with Patrick and we've all heard the stories of what people will do for love."

Earlier this week, the Rockstahls told KMVT in Twin Falls, Idaho that their employee, who they described as clearly distraught, came to them in October and said that the nurse told them "a man had asked her to kill the mother of his child."

Berreth’s daughter is safe and is currently in the care of her maternal grandparents.

[Photos: Teller County Jail; Facebook]

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